MOSCOW, October 20. /TASS/. NATO is strengthening its military infrastructure close to the border of the Russia-Belarus Union State and the military-political situation remains tense, Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu said on Wednesday.
"NATO is building up its forward presence near the borders of the Russia-Belarus Union State, improving its military infrastructure, creating stockpiles of armaments, military hardware and materiel and practicing troop redeployment," Russia’s defense chief said at a joint board meeting of the Defense Ministries of Russia and Belarus.
The Russian defense minister stressed the importance of the meeting with the Belarusian colleagues in the face-to-face format despite the pandemic due to the complex military and political situation. "Today we will discuss the essential issues of our defense ministries’ interaction. Holding our session in the face-to-face format despite the continued pandemic stresses the importance of our meetings amid the tense military and political situation," Shoigu said.
"Thus, an armored brigade of the US Army and four multinational battalion tactical groups have been redeployed to Poland and the Baltic states. The headquarters of NATO’s coalition divisions have been set up in Romania, Poland and Latvia. Efforts are underway to beef up the capacity of the port and airfield infrastructure," Shoigu pointed out.
In Shoigu’s estimates, NATO’s response force strength has been actually doubled from 25,000 to 40,000 personnel.
"Washington is deploying Aegis Ashore ballistic missile defense systems in Romania and Poland. The multi-mission capability of their launchers allows using not only interceptor missiles but also Tomahawk cruise missiles and advanced strike weapons that the Pentagon is developing," Russia’s defense chief said.